On Being Blog

Tuesday, April 15, 2008 - 18:03

Over the past week I have been travelling. I must make a choice about my education, and I have been visiting the schools I am considering attending, asking questions of their students, staff, and faculty.

People who study religion are often full of questions.  So at The Divinity School of the University of Chicago someone raised the following: “What resources do you have for frustrated Catholic women?”  There turned out to be a bevy of enthusiastic resources: a nun, a professor, three students, and an administrator each spoke up, excited at the chance to start a discussion about the role of women in the Catholic Church.  One Episcopal male student shouted, “You should convert!”  The nun described a woman who had carved a church leadership position for herself without being ordained.  The professor was still searching for an answer herself.

Friday, April 11, 2008 - 16:42

CNN is broadcasting a presidential candidate forum on faith issues this Sunday, April 13, at 8:00pm ET that includes both Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama (as of this post, John McCain had not accepted the invitation to participate).  I hate to admit it, but I think I’m not alone in acknowledging that my attention to this year’s presidential election ebbs and flows as the long months of campaigning continue.  But I will tune in this weekend with hopes of hearing a substantive dialogue on ”pressing moral issues that are bridging ideological divides now more than ever, including poverty, global AIDS, climate change and human rights.”


Wednesday, April 9, 2008 - 10:57
Friday, April 4, 2008 - 23:59
Friday, April 4, 2008 - 12:59

If you've had a long day and are looking for a moment of reflection, watch Carolina LaBranche's lovely two-minute homage to her mother.

Thursday, April 3, 2008 - 13:48
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Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 14:11

We won a Peabody for this show! Read all about it here.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 10:49


(photo: Lastexit/Flickr)

Wednesday, March 26, 2008 - 16:47

Even though On Being producers sit within virtually an arm's length of one another, sometimes the conversation's better played out online. Check out the comment thread.

Monday, March 24, 2008 - 21:11

While conducting some research for our upcoming show on humanism, I was reminded of an amazing truth about ancient texts. Greek philosophy doesn’t come to us whole; it is an inheritance in pieces. The passage of time always edits, and of Epicurus, the ancient Greek philosopher who died in 270 BCE, barely any original writing remains.

The scarcity of original texts can be difficult in some ways. We must learn what we can about him, Epicurus, from the philosophers who wrote about him after his death, the Epicureans. The most important of these writings, and the one source for texts by Epicurus himself, is a biography by Diogenes, Lives of Eminent Philosophers, from 230 CE. It is not always easy to do research on a figure whose personal writings are so few.

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